The Northern Ireland Inter-Faith Forum, with the support of the Northern Ireland Community Relations Council, has published a colourful multi-faith wallchart for the year 2001. The wallchart is a calendar of religious festivals and observances and marks the feast days, fasts and festivals of different faith communities including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Baha'ism and Chinese religions. The wallchart follows last year's award winning Multi-Faith Calendar for the year 2000.
The wallchart is part of a broad-based educational campaign by the Inter-Faith Forum in Northern Ireland to promote respect for, and understanding of, religious diversity. Earlier this year, as part of the campaign, the Forum opened an inter-faith Quiet Room at Belfast International Airport for prayer and reflection.
The wallchart is being launched today (Monday 18 December) at 10.30am at the offices of the Community Relations Council, 6 Murray Street, Belfast. Speakers will include Dr Jonathan Bardon, Chair of the Community Relations Council, and Saunaka Rishi Das, Chair of the Northern Ireland Inter-Faith Forum.
"This is a wonderful educational resource for Northern Ireland", according to Saunaka Rishi Das. "The Multi-Faith Wallchart includes all faiths and beliefs and is designed to help the people of Northern Ireland to understand the diversity which exists all around us."
Mark Adair, the Community Relations Council's European Programme Director, who has funded the project from the European Special Support Programme for Peace and Reconciliation, said
"The wallchart colourfully illustrates the religious and cultural diversity of local communities. It is a unique educational resource providing a revealing insight into their different traditions and beliefs. No wall or office space should be without this wallchart in the year ahead," added Mr Adair. "All those involved are to be congratulated".
The Multi-Faith Wallchart will be distributed free to schools and colleges, Library Boards, religious organisations and community-based organisations throughout Northern Ireland. It will also be available from the Community Relations Information Centre (21 College Square East, Belfast).
Note for Editors The Northern Ireland Inter-Faith Forum was formed in 1993 following extensive discussions with members of the ethnic and religious communities in Northern Ireland. Its aims are to promote friendship and mutual understanding across the spectrum of religious and ethnic life in Northern Ireland. The Forum organises regular training and educational activities
The Northern Ireland Community Relations Council was formed in 1990 to assist people and organisations in Northern Ireland to address communal divisions. It supports the principles of Equity, Interdependence and Respect for Diversity. Almost 500 projects receive grant aid from the Council each year.
For further information contact
Mark Adair, Director of European Programme, CRC, tel: 028 90 227500 (office hours)
Shaunaka Rishi Das, Inter-Faith Forum, tel: 028 91 852796 (home)